Protesters Rally in Solidarity With Palestinians at Israel's U.S. Embassy, Consulates

Protesters have rallied in solidarity with Palestinians outside Israel's embassy and consulates in the U.S. as the conflict in the Middle East continues.

The latest escalation in violence on the Gaza Strip began on May 10. At least 219 Palestinians have been killed in Israeli airstrikes since that date, the Associated Press has reported, citing the Gaza health ministry. AP said 12 people in Israel had been killed in rocket attacks launched by Hamas, which controls Gaza.

Water, fuel and medical supplies are running low in Gaza, which is one of the most densely populated places on the planet and has been under a blockade by Israel and Egypt since Hamas seized control in 2007.

Protest outside Israel embassy
Pro-Palestinian protesters outside the Israeli embassy in Washington, D.C. on May 18. Andrew Caballero-Reynolds/AFP via Getty Images

As the death toll mounts, President Joe Biden is coming under increasing pressure to do more to stop the fighting. Over the past week, the U.S. has repeatedly blocked a proposed U.N. Security Council statement that would have expressed concern for civilian deaths and demanded an end to the violence.

But a readout of a call that Biden had with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu of Israel on Monday said the president had expressed support for a ceasefire.

On Tuesday, White House press secretary Jen Psaki did not confirm whether or not the president had called for an immediate halt to the fighting, but told reporters he "wants to see an end to the violence on the ground, an end to the suffering of the Israeli and the Palestinian people."

The crisis has prompted worldwide protests. In recent days, demonstrations have been held outside seven of Israel's eight consulates in the U.S. (except Miami), as well as the Israeli embassy in Washington, D.C.

Washington, D.C.

Scores of people gathered outside the Israeli embassy in D.C. on Tuesday to protest Israel's military actions in Gaza.

They waved Palestinian flags and carried signs reading "Stop Funding Israeli Occupation" and "Stop Ethnic Cleansing Palestine." One person carried a large poster of Netanyahu with the words: "Wanted For Genocide."

Protesters also mourned victims of the fighting next to mock coffins draped with the Palestinian flag.

Pro-Palestinian protest in Washington DC
Protesters place mock coffins on the ground in front of the Israeli embassy in Washington, D.C. on May 18. Andrew Caballero-Reynolds/AFP via Getty Images

New York

Hundreds of demonstrators gathered in front of the Israeli consulate in New York City on Tuesday.

According to NBC New York, pro-Israel counter-protesters showed up and the two groups traded chants and insults. Some of the confrontations led to punches being thrown and arrests.

The consulate sent staff home ahead of the protest, the TV station reported.

Protesters also gathered outside the offices of Israel's Permanent Mission to the United Nations and marched through the streets of midtown Manhattan, shutting down parts of Second Avenue.

Pro-Palestinian protests in Manhattan
Demonstrators march in support of the Palestinian people in midtown Manhattan, New York City, on May 18. Angela Weiss/AFP via Getty Images

Los Angeles

Pro-Palestinian protesters gathered outside the Israeli consulate in Los Angeles on Tuesday.

"What do we want? Justice! When do we want it? Now!" they chanted at the entrance to the building, according to footage shared on Twitter.

“What do we want? Justice! When do we want it? Now!” Pro-Palestinian protesters chant at the entrance of the Israeli Consulate in Los Angeles. pic.twitter.com/RyrMTozIZW

— Vishal P Singh (@VPS_Reports) May 18, 2021

Vishal Singh, who filmed the demonstration, tweeted that supporters of Israel had driven past "and verbally accosted pro-Palestinian protesters." Singh added that police had "moved in and told the Palestinian supporters to go back onto the sidewalk."

He later posted footage that he claimed showed the Los Angeles Police Department "kettling" the demonstrators. "Kettling is a tactic that involves surrounding and trapping protesters," Singh tweeted.

Boston

Protests in Boston took place on Saturday—coinciding with Nakba Day, or the Palestinian Day of Catastrophe, which marks the displacement of Palestinians as the state of Israel was founded in 1948.

Thousands of demonstrators gathered in Copley Square before marching to the Israeli consulate for New England, according to videos on social media.

Thousands gathering in front of the Israeli Consulate’s office in Boston right now. #FreePalestine pic.twitter.com/lmMqZE1Ne4

— Mike Connolly (@MikeConnollyMA) May 15, 2021

Chicago

On May 12, hundreds of protesters attended a rally outside the Israeli consulate to the Midwest in Chicago.

Marchers gathered downtown before walking to the consulate for a rally organised by the Chicago Coalition for Justice in Palestine, NBC Chicago reported. They called for action to be taken against Israel over its military campaign and the expulsion of Palestinians from their homes.

At the weekend, protesters rallied in Grant Park before marching through the streets of downtown Chicago.

Pro-Palestine protest in Chicago
Hundreds of protesters gathered outside the Israeli consulate in Chicago on May 12. Scott Olson/Getty Images

San Francisco

Pro-Palestinian protesters gathered outside the Israeli consulate in San Francisco for rallies at the weekend and on Tuesday.

At least 1,000 people attended a rally in front of the consulate on Tuesday, according to NBC Bay Area reporter Terry McSweeney.

He posted a video showing the crowd waving Palestinian flags behind a barricade as police guarded the building.

“Free Palestine” rally in front of Israel consulate in San Francisco. 1,000 people here . More at ⁦@nbcbayarea⁩ at 6 pic.twitter.com/7Dby8ePA8P

— TerryMcSweeney (@TerryMcSweeney) May 19, 2021

Houston

A large crowd of protesters gathered outside the Israeli consulate in Houston, Texas, on Tuesday.

"Free, free Palestine, occupation is a crime, from the river to the sea, Palestine will be free," they chanted, according to a video posted on social media by journalist Sam Russek.

NOW: protestors have gathered in front of the Israeli embassy in Houston to support #Palestine. 7 of Israel’s 9 embassies across the US have drawn protests against illegal occupation

HPD is here now hastily placing fencing to keep ppl off the road pic.twitter.com/e0ozya3tMy

— Sam Russek (@samrussek) May 18, 2021

Russell tweeted that police officers were hastily erecting fencing to keep the protesters off the road.

Atlanta

Hundreds of protesters rallied in front of the Israeli consulate in Atlanta on Tuesday.

The protest, organized by the Palestinian Youth Movement, demanded that the U.S. end all weapon sales to Israel, CBS46 reported.

One member of the group identified only as Abdallah told the TV station: "We want to make sure our voices are heard here and they know they're not alone over there."

Another protester, Dalya Alsaslihi, said: "I'm just really really angry. It's our land, it's our culture. They're trying to wipe it all out."